Going up to take a dead ball duty and arrowing it into the back of the net is one of the coolest things a football player can do in the same. The the thunderous power of it, nonchalant precision of it, everything just oozes pretty cool.
From delicate curls to powerful smashes, Nigeria Premier Football League’s free-kick experts get the ball in the net from anywhere around the box. It is a unique skill, but a free-kick can change the game in an instant.
NPFL is home to some of the Africa’s best individual talent. Here are the top five free-kick experts currently in the division.
#𝟱 𝗙𝗮𝗿𝗼𝘂𝗸 𝗠𝗼𝗵𝗮𝗺𝗺𝗲𝗱 [𝗥𝗶𝘃𝗲𝗿𝘀 𝗨𝗻𝗶𝘁𝗲𝗱]
Ghanaian international Farouk Mohammed joined Rivers United earlier this season from Enyimba.
He has since settled down nicely at the club, and was a joy to watch on Wednesday in Jos during their 3-2 loss against Lobi Stars.
Despite playing ten men, Farouk played a massive part as they narrowly lost to their group B rivals.
The midfielder struck his side’s opener from a nicely curved freekick in the 64th minute. It was his first freekick goal this season and his first goal for Rivers United.
#𝟰 𝗧𝗼𝗰𝗵𝘂𝗸𝘄𝘂 𝗠𝗶𝗰𝗵𝗮𝗲𝗹 [𝗣𝗹𝗮𝘁𝗲𝗮𝘂 𝗨𝗻𝗶𝘁𝗲𝗱]
Tochukwu Michael is one of the most technically gifted footballers of the modern era currently playing in the Nigeria Premier Football League. Many pundits have rated Michael among the best-attacking midfielders in West Africa right now.
The Nigerian has a wonderful passing and shooting range with his left foot. In addition to being an excellent deep-lying playmaker, he is also quite adept at finding the back of the net on a regular basis.
During the course of 2021/2022 season, Michael proved to be quite an effective goalscorer with 11 strikes to his name with 6 coming from free kicks.
#𝟯 𝗘𝗹𝗶𝗷𝗮𝗵 𝗔𝗸𝗮𝗻𝗻𝗶 [𝗘𝗻𝘆𝗶𝗺𝗯𝗮]
Over the last decade, Nigeria football powerhouse Enyimba have had the privilege of fielding some gifted footballers. Attacking midfielder Elijah Akanni who arrived this season is certainly one of them. The Nigerian is a sensational set-piece taker and has scored his fair share of free kicks in the NPFL.
Akanni has scored seven free-kicks in his last fifteen attempts in the league since last season, with his latest one coming this season only.
Scoring against Gombe United on NPFL matchday seven (February 11), Akanni became the first player to score a direct free kick in the 2023 campaign.
Scoring against Gombe United on NPFL matchday seven (February 11), Akanni became the first player to score a direct free kick in the 2023 campaign. His impeccable free kick goal was the highlight of the match as it leveled the scoreline for Enyimba, before setting up Chukwuemeka Obioma to score in their 2-1 win.
#𝟮 𝗩𝗶𝗰𝘁𝗼𝗿 𝗖𝗼𝗹𝗹𝗶𝗻𝘀 [𝗡𝗮𝘀𝗮𝗿𝗮𝘄𝗮 𝗨𝗻𝗶𝘁𝗲𝗱]
Stunning free kick scored by Collins against Akwa United will be a fond memory for Nasarawa United supporters.
Collin’s first goal for the Solid Miners was a 30-yard rocket finish against Akwa United in Uyo on Sunday April 9, and has become something of a specialist from set pieces for the club.
#𝟭 𝗡𝗲𝗹𝘀𝗼𝗻 𝗔𝗯𝗶𝗮𝗺 [𝗡𝗮𝘀𝗮𝗿𝗮𝘄𝗮 𝗨𝗻𝗶𝘁𝗲𝗱]
Theres plenty lining up to take set piece duties at Nasarawa United, and its no surprise Abiam, an exemplary example of the modern centre back who joined from Wikki Tourists, is capable of firing in a free kick.
What you don’t want to do is give Nasarawa United defender Abiam an opportunity from a dead ball. He has scored 12 goals from free-kicks for good measure in the last three seasons in the Nigeria Premier Football League.
When Abiam is on the scoresheet, no need asking how he scored, it is from a freekick and that is just how good he is.